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Ayotte Léo

Léo Ayotte (1909-1976)

Born at Sainte-Flore, near Shawinigan, he was educated in the seminary of Trois-Rivières and at Nicolet. He moved to Montreal to work at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, as a model and later as a caretaker. He developed his interest in art through his contact with teachers and students. In 1935 he began to paint traditional Quebec landscapes and port scenes. In 1945 he turned to painting full-time. In the 1950’s he made friends with Alfred Pellan and the writer François Hertel who helped liberate his pictorial art from traditionalism. In 1963 he travelled to Europe and discovered the new realism which had a certain influence on his work. Although best known for his landscapes, he did still lifes and portraits. He painted for most part in oils and had a strong, direct and attractive style.

                                                Source: A Dictionary of Canadian Artists, Colin S. Macdonald, Vol 1.